Grasshopper sparrow

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Grasshopper sparrow
Grasshopper Swallow.jpg
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Emberizidae
Genus: Ammodramus
Species: A. savannarum
Binomial name
Ammodramus savannarum
(Gmelin, 1789)
Synonyms

Coturniculus savannarum

The grasshopper sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum) is a small American sparrow. The genus Ammodramus contains nine species which inhabit grasslands and prairies.

The Florida grasshopper sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum floridanus) is endangered.

Description[edit]


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These small sparrows measure 10–14 cm (3.9–5.5 in) in length, span about 17.5 cm (6.9 in) across the wings and weigh from 13.8 to 28.4 g (0.49 to 1.00 oz), with an average of 17 g (0.60 oz).[2][3] Adults have upperparts streaked with brown, grey, black and white; they have a light brown breast, a white belly and a short brown tail. Their face is light brown with an eye ring and a dark brown crown with a central narrow light stripe. There are regional variations in the appearance of this bird.

Distribution and habitat[edit]

Their breeding habitat is open fields and prairie across southern Canada, the United States, Mexico and Central America, with a small endangered population in the Andes of Colombia and (perhaps only formerly) Ecuador. The northern populations migrate to the southern United States, Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean. Like many grassland birds, this bird's numbers have declined across many parts of its range, including a 98% drop in New York State.

Behaviour[edit]

The nest is a well-concealed open cup on the ground under vegetation. They forage on the ground in vegetation, mainly eating insects, especially grasshoppers, and seeds.

This bird's song is a buzzy tik tuk zee, resembling the sound made by a grasshopper. Unlike some other members of the Ammodramus family of sparrows, they will readily sing from open and exposed perches.

References[edit]

  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Ammodramus savannarum". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013. 
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ CRC Handbook of Avian Body Masses by John B. Dunning Jr. (Editor). CRC Press (1992), ISBN 978-0849342585.

External links[edit]